2011 Mission Helper Trip to Nepal
2011 Mission Helper Trip to Nepal On Tuesday, July 5th, the 2011 Mission Helper Team departed from Chicago O’Hare airport with the beautiful, mountainous country of Nepal as their destination.
In addition to Pastor Todd Ohlmann, the mission team is made up of Chad Seybt, Natalie Schreyer, Ryan Augustin, Emily Hulke, Melanie Halstein, Randy Wittorp, Naomi Bernthal, Carl Reim, and Becky Sippert.
During their visit to Nepal, the team of fellow Christians has been working with the pastors of the Himalayan Church of the Lutheran Confession of Nepal (HCLCN), visiting established HCLCN congregations and tribal mountain villages in the mountains west of Kathmandu and near the Tibet border where the Gospel witness has been limited at best. The work of the Mission Helpers is best described as “Child Evangelism” as their primary work, teaching one-day Bible programs in several village congregations and gatherings. The ten Mission Helpers divided up into two teams with each of them trekking to villages each day where they have taught the children gathered there. The trips to these mountain villages have involved traveling in th crowded buses, rickshaws, elephants, and mostly hiking several hours up steep mountainous foot paths in sweltering heat and humid conditions.
The two mission teams have had two to four hours to present their lessons which cover a broad scope of the Bible. The teaching program is divided into five lessons, taking the children from Creation to Judgment Day. The heart of all that has been taught is our salvation through Jesus Christ. In a culture heavily dominated (92%) by a mixture of Buddhism and Hinduism it is important to establish the fact that the Mission Helpers are there to proclaim the truth of the one true God and what He has done for all through the life, death, and resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ. These lessons stand in stark contrast to the tales of false gods and god- desses, idolatrous worship, reincarnation, and work righteousness that so dominates the nation of Nepal and those who are held sway by the grips of spiritual darkness.
Pastor Ohlmann and CLC teacher Chad Seybt (who is also an ILC seminary graduate) have had the opportunity to preach, as well as conduct pastoral training seminars for the current roster of HCLCN pastors along with pastors and evangelists from Tibet who have been receiving training in the Word from the leaders of the HCLCN.
The Lord has blessed the Mission Helpers with safe travel thus far. Although they have experienced bouts of sickness, the Great Physician of the body has restored their health and given them the strength to carry on under difficult conditions. We thank God for His merciful and faithful care of these fellow Christians.
During the course of the mission trip, each of the Mission Helpers have written of their experiences and posted them on an internet blog. They can be accessed at http://2011mhtnepal.blogspot.com or http://journals.lutheranmissions.org . They write of their marvel and amazement at the wondrous beauty of God’s created nature in Nepal, the great commitment of the Nepali pastors, their hosts’ hospitality under very humble conditions, the joyful faith life and worship of the Nepali Christians, and the hunger to learn the Word of God. Under the difficult and trying conditions of this mission trip, each of them writes of having been richly blessed through this whole experience.
The Mission Helpers will be returning on Friday, July 29th. May the Lord bless the remainder of their work in Nepal and grant them a safe trip home.
Plans have begun for a Mission Helper Trip to the East African countries of Kenya and Tanzania in July of 2012. See http://www.clclutheran.net/MissionHelpers for more information concerning the Mission Helper Program.